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Slaves and Slavery, History of

Burnard, Trevor



James D. Wright


Slavery has existed for millennia. It is both a status - an inferior person with no rights in a society - and a condition, a kind of humanity which was accorded fewer rights than other forms of humanity. A slave was the quintessential outsider. Most societies had slaves but only some societies - ancient Greece and Rome and the plantation colonies of European powers in the Americas - were slave societies in which slavery was essential to the economy and politically sensitive. In modern times, slavery has been strongly connected with race, especially the forced removal of Africans to the Americas to labor in the production of tropical goods.


Burnard, T. (2015). Slaves and Slavery, History of. In J. D. Wright (Ed.), International Encyclopedia of the Social & Behavioral Sciences (54-58). (2nd ed.). Amsterdam: Elsevier.

Online Publication Date Mar 12, 2015
Publication Date Mar 26, 2015
Deposit Date Sep 16, 2021
Publisher Elsevier
Pages 54-58
Edition 2nd ed.
Book Title International Encyclopedia of the Social & Behavioral Sciences
ISBN 9780080970875; 9780080970868
Keywords Africa; Agency; Atlantic world; Colonialism; Human rights; Industrialization; Labor; Marginality; Plantations; Racism; Social death
Public URL